By Matshidiso Makhalanyane Minister of Higher Education and Training Blade Nzimande released figures showing the damages to state university property and building during recent student protests. After thorough inspection, the Department said the estimated costs of damages to university buildings and properties were about R145 million. #FeesMustFall protests which began October 2015 at Witwatersrand cost more than one million rand. The University of KwaZulu-Natal was on the lead at a whopping 84 million. The Department said. The University of the Western Cape followed with estimated R47 million and Tshwane University of Technology at R5 million. Wits recorded R1.4 million and University of Johannesburg sitting on R345 000. Higher Department of Education and Training spokesperson, Kwaye Nkwanyana said: “The minister insists that whilst protests are a democratic right in the country, but the resort to violence and damage to property, as has happened repeatedly, constitute a criminal act that must be prosecutable.” The Minister has met with the National Police Commission Nathi Nhleko to discuss safety at Universities and deployment of police officers when there are protests. “We are calling for parents, faith-based organisations and society at large, to condemn this new phenomena of criminal behavior”. Said Nzimande Photo courtesy of: African News Agency        

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